There's a certain story whose implications strongly resonates in our society today.
The story goes like this: a man finds treasure buried in a field, and in his joy, he covers it up again. He goes off and sells everything that he owns so that he may buy the land and thus attain the treasure hidden within it.
In today's world, especially in a capitalistic community such as ours, the model that everyone follows attempts to project the gross margin in consideration of the cost and profit. It's fairly simple to grasp: figure out how much you're going to spend to produce, and then subtract it from how much revenue you'll make. Then predict whether it's a safe path to take or if it's too risky of an investment. It's all in consideration of the relationship of the total cost to the projected profit.
It's not just in business. It's our mode of thought when considering our education; our time; our internet subscription; our vacation days; etc.
But what happens if the projected benefit is actually invaluable?
What is most interesting about the story is really the reckless abandon with which the man conducted himself after he realized the true value of the field, regardless of how much he had to pay its owner (remember, he sold all that he had to obtain the money for the land). This meant that his projected revenue far exceeded the total cost, and the margin was so large that it mattered not the cost to obtain it.
The photograph above is of a man's journal. To be quite translucent, it was taken during an outreach attempt to feed and clothe the needy, and in the middle of it, this man took out his worn notebook and opened it to show us its pages. Whether or not he was trying to inspire us, we were deeply moved by the contents of his journal, which reflected the candid thoughts of this homeless and hopeful man.
And that's when it became clear—human life is priceless. And this man's infectious hope and optimism made him far greater than any treasure in a field. The invaluable nature of this man's life diminishes the net cost to nearly zero when the benefits rise at an exponential rate, and we should accordingly be moved to conduct ourselves with utter and reckless abandon when we can finally realize this.
The margin is not simply large; it is infinite.